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As their name would suggest, Australian miserablists Mournful Congregation play in the lethargic and moribund funeral doom style, with the tracks on their 2009 release 'The June Frost' consisting of slow, reflective, hypnotic and crushingly heavy riffs, backed up by solid if a little generic sounding guttoral/ethereal vocals in the usual funeral doom style.
The song progression is fairly minimal and tends to creep up on the listener insidiously, and the songs merge their despondency with hints of a somewhat romantic influence that recalls a less dynamic and more suppressed Mourning Beloveth in places, but on the whole the album feels sparse, mesmerising and unintrusive, and despite its being atmospheric and well put together it perhaps feels just a little too vanilla for my tastes.
The album also incorporates rather a lot of melodic guitar-noodling in places, but this often sounds somewhat incongrous and doesnt work as well as it has on Esoteric's 2008 album 'The Maniacal Vale' for example.
In spite of its shortcomings however, 'The June Frost' is nevertheless a solid and introspective piece of funeral doom, and is worthy of investigation for fans of Skepticism, Esoteric and Evoken.
1. Solemn Strikes the Funeral Chime 03:52
2. White Cold Wrath Burnt Frozen Blood 17:02
3. Descent of the Flames 09:01
4. The June Frost 04:24
5. A Slow March to the Burial 06:49
6. The Februar Winds 02:53
7. Suicide Choir 12:49
8. The Wreath 03:16
Total playing time 01:00:06
Disc #1 Tracklisting
1 Solemn Strikes the Funeral Chime
2 White Cold Wrath Burnt Frozen Blood
3 Descent of the Flames
4 June Frost
5 Slow March to the Burial
6 Februar Winds
7 Suicide Choir